Differences in interactions with a conversational agent

Young Hoon Oh, Kyungjin Chung, Da Young Ju

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)


Recent technological advances introduced conversational agents into homes. Many researchers have investigated how people utilize and perceive them. However, only a small number of studies have focused on how older adults interact with these agents. This study presents a 14-day user study of 19 participants who experienced a conversational agent in a real-life environment. We grouped them into two groups by age and compared their experiences. From a log study and semi-structured interviews, we identified several differences between the two groups. Compared to younger adults, older adults used the agent more. They used it primarily for listening to music and reported satisfaction with it. Younger adults mainly used utility skills like weather report checks and setting of alarms, which streamlined their daily lives. Moreover, older adults tended to view the agent as a companion, while younger adults saw it as a tool. Based on these empirical findings, we suggest that conversational agents should be designed with consideration of the different usage patterns and perceptions across age groups.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3189
JournalInternational journal of environmental research and public health
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 2020 May 1

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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